Server Consolidation on a Shoestring

As part of the application/interview process with Housing, I was asked to give a 15 min presentation on a significant project I had been involved with, preferably one I had lead, including timeline, technical skills and lessons learned. I chose to talk about my experiences virtualizing hosts at Hoopeston Area Schools. Little did I know just how similar Housing was to where Jim and I were.
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Old Newspaper

My parents recently encouraged me to bring some of my old toy tractors out of their attic back to the new, larger house for Robin to play with. The tractors were wrapped with pages from The Daily Press Saturday July 19, 1986, section D. At the top of the page, was this gem:
5 years later, does America still want its MTV?
(Page D2 image)
There are some wonderful, choice quotes from the article:

Journey and Van Halen – two of the biggest names in rock’n’roll – put out new albums and don’t make videos.

Big names indeed, and they are still around today.

“I thing they finally realized that in order for [MTV and VH1] to be around for the long term, they’re going to have to act a bit more like a 24-hour TV station (with) more traditional television approaches, ” McCullaugh says. “You just can’t get by showing clips for 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

Ha! Was this the beginning of the end of MTV as a music video channel?

Staving off stereo…Soon there will be homes with two, even three, stereo TVs…leading the sale and rental of home music videos “to become a very major product area.”

Remember when Stereo on your TV was a big deal? Me neither.

Read the scanned in articles, have a laugh. If there’s enough interest in this, there are are also articles on “one of the most striking young actresses in show business today” – Demi Moore, some guy named James Cameron who had just directed a film called “Aliens” and a gossip column with the likes of Bruce Willis, Olivia Newton-John, Bo Derek and George Hamilton.


I guess “recidivate” is more appropriate.

recidivate: To return to a previous pattern of behavior, especially to return to criminal habits.

Is returning to a previous employer considered recidivism? What if the reporting structure and task lists have changed drastically since you left? What if those new tasks interest you more than what you are doing now? What if you miss what you were doing?

If you haven’t already heard, my light saber will be turning back to green on or about August 4th, assuming all the paperwork goes through.

I guess I should also respond to something I mentioned on Twitter, Gale’s excellent post about the hidden reasons people leave.

  1. The job or workplace was not as expected. – I can honestly say that the workplace and the job were just about as expected. I loved certain aspects of the job: learning new things, dealing with new people, interacting with the other groups in a large organization, trying to balance serving the customers and running a service. But, other parts were not so easy to deal with.
  2. The mismatch between job and person. – This is the big one. I’m not cut out to be a Service Manager for a campus wide service, let alone multiple services. I also miss the day to day work of solving problems, supporting individual users and building solutions for a slightly smaller, more nimble organization.
  3. Too little coaching and feedback. – Never really a problem, though some internal changes in management structure did leave me concerned about who I’d be reporting to and who I’d be taking orders from. But, those were mostly resolved long before I’d decided to depart.
  4. Too few growth and advancement opportunities. – Not a problem for me. Ever.
  5. Feeling devalued and unrecognized. – For others in the organization, yes, but not for me.
  6. Stress from overwork and work-life balance. – Not really the case, if anything, I’m going to an environment that will probably increase the stress and twist the work-life balance even more.
  7. Loss of trust and confidence in senior leaders. – Somewhere, at the back of my brain, maybe. But nothing bad enough to make me just up and leave.

Anyway, I’m hoping the new duties at an old place will lead to a return of work related blogging on some new and some old topics.

New Hardware (Again)

Well, the previously mentioned system lasted Dad just over 4 1/2 years, so that’s not too bad. The new machine is an Optiplex 755 with a 2.66 GHz Core2 Duo, 2GB of RAM, 160GB RAID1 storage (using the Intel chipset RAID), a nice ATI video card and a 19″ Ultrasharp Wide Flat Panel (1908FWP). It’s running Windows XP, but we bought it with a Vista Business license, should he ever need to upgrade.

This one should last just as long or longer than the GX270, I hope.

Long way across town

I hope that my packets aren’t going to Los Angeles and Texas to get from my house in Champaign back to campus, but if the router labels below are accurate…


Tracing route to []
over a maximum of 30 hops:

  1     1 ms     1 ms     1 ms []
  2     *        *        *     Request timed out.
  3   113 ms    10 ms    12 ms []
  4    19 ms    19 ms    20 ms []
  5    42 ms    53 ms    45 ms []
  6    57 ms    45 ms    56 ms []
  7   176 ms   101 ms   102 ms []
  8    95 ms   130 ms   101 ms
  9   175 ms   100 ms   102 ms []
 10   130 ms   102 ms   102 ms []
 11   117 ms   101 ms   102 ms []
 12   120 ms   101 ms   102 ms []
 13   123 ms   204 ms   111 ms []
 14   135 ms   103 ms   203 ms []
 15   123 ms   175 ms   130 ms []
 16   152 ms   203 ms   124 ms []
 17   155 ms   123 ms   146 ms []
 18   166 ms   123 ms   183 ms []
 19    92 ms   128 ms   177 ms []
 20    99 ms    98 ms   102 ms []
 21    91 ms    98 ms   112 ms []
 22   132 ms   102 ms   101 ms []